Author: saundralparker


Rich had his first follow-up appointment with his surgeon today, and everything looked great.  Rich told the surgeon about a pain he’s been having in his thigh, and the surgeon asked if he has been overdoing it….What?  Overdoing?  Not Rich……I couldn’t believe it, he answered honestly and said yes, he had been.  The surgeon told him as long as he keeps overdoing, he’s going to continue to have that kind of pain.  In response, Rich asked if he can go to the gym any time soon….I’m not sure if Rich was connecting the dots…If you overdo it, you’ll have pain….so going to the gym seems to run along the lines of overdoing it…but then again, how would I know…I only have six artificial joints to compare to his one….Men…

Instead of going to the gym, I’m hoping to get him on his computer to start editing the many videos that have been piling up over the last three weeks.  I know he won’t be uploading any until the 23rd, as we have plans with friends to have lunch the next two days, and that should be enough stress on his hip….Let’s hope he decides to rest and get back to editing…


Yesterday I got serious about making thank you cards for Rich to give to friends and family for their kindness while he was down with his hip surgery.  I started by using some Ton Stamps, and if you’ve never used them, they make terrific red rubber (and clear) stamps, but I am all about the red rubber floral backgrounds.  They are so deeply etched, and create such lovely backgrounds….I used a bunch of different images, and embossing powders to create richly colored line images.  Even if I didn’t get a perfect image (because I couldn’t tell if I had covered the entire image with embossing ink), I can still use parts of the background and make a card with just a portion of the background used…I’ll definitely be making videos to show you all the ways I’ll be using them.

Today I read a Jack Reacher series book, and then had my girlfriend Lynn’s twin grandkids over for a lesson in etiquette.  Their older sister had been in one of the etiquette classes I teach in college, and thought her fourteen year old brother and sister could use the class, as they’ve been invited to a “dinner party” for one of their friends.  They are required to wear a suit or dressy dress, and the boys are supposed to wear a dress hat.  I can’t imagine how many fourteen year olds would have the necessary clothing, but these two are all about making sure they know what they are doing, and not sticking out like sore thumbs.  I can’t imagine what they will be served at this dinner party, as the birthday boy is world travelled, and spends summers in Greece…I had my girlfriend make a very simple meal for us to practice with, and it wasn’t very successful..These twins could not be more different.  The girl would eat almost anything, and her brother would eat almost nothing.  In fact, our dinner tonight was the first time he’s ever eaten salad.  I’m not talking some kind of crazy salad, I’m talking lettuce and dressing…He’d never tried it before….Then came the soup.  He said he’ll only eat a few kinds of soups, and luckily, he would eat the chicken noodle soup that his grandmother brought, but wouldn’t eat many other varieties.  I had her make a simple chicken dish with pasta, and he ate both of those, but then when we talked about the possibilities of what main courses he might be served at this “dinner party,” he said he wouldn’t eat almost any of them.  I really hope that he talks to the birthday boy before the dinner, so he’s not surprised by what they might feed him, as he won’t eat seafood, steak, prime rib, pork, or any combinations of the above.  He says his family primarily eats chicken, and so that’s what he eats.  Apparently he doesn’t branch out much (OK, at all.)  I told him he’s going to have to eat whatever they serve him, or suffer through a bunch of questions like, “didn’t you like that?”  or “Are you feeling OK” or “Was the food OK?”  I’m concerned that if he doesn’t eat what’s being served, he’s going to offend the host, and possibly not be considered to be included in future dinners, and that would be sad.  I really hope he can power through whatever they feed him, but it wasn’t looking very promising tonight…At least they know which forks to use and maybe that will count for something.


I spent the afternoon shopping with my girlfriend…we started at a craft fair held at the local elementary school.  There were a lot of vendors, but not many new ideas. So many things are repeated year after year, and I love it when people come up with something new.  Sadly, this wasn’t the year for new ideas.  I find more and more of the home party businesses transferring into the craft fair scene.  It used to be that if you wanted to buy Tupperware, you either knew a dealer, and bought through them, or you were invited to a party at someone’s home.   Now they sell primarily at craft fairs.  It wouldn’t bother me if the home party business made up a small percentage of the “crafters,” but now, it seems over half of the vendors are small businesses with no “crafts” involved.  They are the new “Lula Roe” clothing version (can’t remember the name of that company), and the vendor that sells Scentsy home fragrances, and the ones that sell goods made by women in third world countries, and the nail stickers, and Avon, and the lists go on and on.

The big craze continues to be things cut with a Cricut or Silhouette, and this year, it was long, tear-drop shaped earrings made from vinyl that looked like leather…Two vendors sold the exact same shaped earrings, which I thought was odd, considering the many shapes you could make for earrings out of vinyl…

I would like to make a few of the sock gnomes for family and friends….and my twist might be adding an essential oil to the inside, so it has a nice fragrance…I think we’ll try it and see how it works out…you never know.  I’d also like to make some small enough to hang on Christmas trees as ornaments.  I need to come up with some gift themed videos and I’m hoping this will be one of them…Guess we’ll have to wait and see what I can come up with.


I felt I should update you on Rich and his hip replacement surgery recovery.  He continues to do amazingly well, but because of that, is now getting to the point where he thinks he should be allowed to do a lot more than the doctor’s advised.  I was warned by his doctors that this would happen, but hoped Rich would realize that the doctor’s advice might be worthwhile.  They said the more he does in the first three weeks, the longer it delays his healing.  That held a lot of water for the first week, but now, halfway through week two, he’s over it.  We had a big snowstorm today and of course, I couldn’t shovel the driveway…we have nowhere urgent to go, and if we did, there’s not enough snow to stop me from driving through it.  Unfortunately, there also isn’t enough snow to stop Rich from getting the mail (at the bottom of our driveway.)  He assured me he wouldn’t have any issues doing so, after I pleaded with him to stop…

The thing is……he’s never been in a position to rely on others to do things for him, and he doesn’t like it.  He’s also never recovered from surgery like this, so he’s also stubborn enough to try things he shouldn’t, without regard for the consequences.  Luckily nothing happened, but what if it had?  I can’t get him to see that part of the scenario…the one where he’s hurt and I can’t help him.  I realize that he’s being careful when he’s taking these chances, but accidents happen, and then where will we be?  Honestly, I didn’t expect this surgery to be so physically taxing on both of us, and I know he sees that, and wants to help.

We have so many wonderful friends, who have been dropping by with food, which is so kind, and it’s made me appreciate all of them that much more.  Rich’s doctor’s appointment is November 20th, and I’ll be so glad when that’s behind us, as he’ll be allowed to drive, walk, go outside, and enjoy life again….This staying in bed or on the couch is becoming a real problem for him…


It’s hard to believe that it’s only been a week since Rich’s hip replacement.  He’s walking without his crutches and already causing problems for me.  I need to tie him down or he might end up in big trouble.  Today, after lunch, my girlfriend and I were going to run errands for an hour or so.  I reminded Rich he needed to get back in bed or I wouldn’t leave and he promised he would.  When I got home, he told me he had decided he needed to run the sweeper since it’s impossible for me to do effectively.  I know I should have been grateful, but instead, I was so angry and frustrated at the risk he had taken.  After all, this morning we took off his bandage for the first time and he got lightheaded, so it’s not like I was over reacting.  He wanted to ease my anxiety over dog-hairy carpets, and instead, made me freak out because I’d left him unattended and he took such a foolish risk.  I don’t think he’ll do that again, but I’m sure in the next two weeks, when he’s supposed to be resting, that he’ll find something else to do that will make me lose my mind.  The doctor warned me that Rich would do this….In fact, he said I should basically tie Rich in place, so he doesn’t overdo it….  I honestly thought he would listen to the doctor, but I guess he thinks he knows best.  Yikes….It’s going to be a long couple of weeks.  Don’t worry, I’ll keep you all in the loop when he tries his next stunt.

I know many of you are thinking I should have appreciated the fact that he wanted to help me….but if he falls and has to have this hip re-replaced, then how do I handle it?

Since we’ve been married, I’ve been the patient and not the nurse, and this roll reversal is taxing, to say the least.  Some parts of it are almost physically impossible for me (like putting on compression socks without his help.)  He’s supposed to have his ice bag on his hip as much of the day as possible, so I’ve been changing ice packs like a mad woman, and trying to stay on top of all of the rest of the household jobs, and making sure he has his meds four times a day and eight different prescriptions.  The dogs have been losing their minds with all of the upheaval, so they’ve been causing problems, jumping on Rich, asking to go outside more often than usual, and terrorizing visitors.

I hope with each passing day that things go more smoothly, and that I can catch my breath….The best I can say at this point, is I haven’t lost my mind…much…


I thought I’d give you a short update on Rich’s surgical recovery.  He took his first shower today and is doing amazingly well.  I slept in yesterday (by accident), and he made his own breakfast and put his pills together to take.  That doesn’t sound like much, but they gave him eight prescriptions, so they are hard to keep track of…I made a big chart and if I didn’t have that, I’d be lost.

Rich hasn’t had a pain level over two since he’s been home, which blows me away, but then again, we’ve kept the ice pack on it and am changing it every two hours, plus giving him pain medication every four hours.  I want to make sure he gets through this first week with minimal pain, as, for me, that’s always been the toughest part.

I’m spoiling him with Mountain Dew and bacon, and friends have been stopping by and dropping off meals, treats, and desserts, so he’s doing well.  I can’t tell you how blessed we are to have such wonderful friends, and if you are one of them, words can’t express how much we appreciate you.